Declining Prostate Health Mean?”
The prostate is a walnut-shaped gland that makes the fluid in semen. You’ll notice the prostate is positioned right where the bladder and urethra meet:
“What Will They Give You to Relieve Your Prostate?”
Treatment options vary depending on the severity of the prostate issues, but they are typically as follows:
1. Lifestyle Changes: Pelvic floor exercises, limiting caffeine, alcohol, and overall fluid intake, etc. As the first line of defense, these may reduce the need to urinate but still don’t directly treat the problematic prostate growth.
2. Medication: For more troubling cases of BPH, medications attempt to solve the problem by either relaxing the bladder muscle or blocking the production of DHT. ‘Alpha Blockers’ are prescribed to relax the smooth muscle of the bladder and allow it to release more urine; however, the FDA published a warning that some 5-alpha reductase inhibitors “may increase the risk of high grade prostate cancer.”4
3. Surgery: The third and most invasive option is going under the knife and having the enlarged prostate tissue removed, or making cuts in the prostate to widen the urethra.
This is a painful option that requires the use of a catheter for several days following the procedure. The questions remains:
Is there another way that doesn’t involve radical lifestyle changes, prescription medication, and painful surgery?
Natural Treatments for an Enlarged Prostate
1. Lifestyle and Diet Changes
Certain lifestyle changes may help relieve symptoms of an enlarged prostate. For those who wish to wait before choosing drug therapy or surgery, trying these recommendations may be beneficial:
- limit or avoid alcohol and caffeine
- limit drinking fluids in the evening
- try to urinate at least once every three hours
- engage in physical activity
- maintain a healthy weight
- increase intake of healthy fats (such as omega-3 foods)
2. Pelvic Floor Training
Pelvic floor training, also known as kegel exercises, can help men strengthen the muscles of the pelvic diaphragm, improving involuntary or abnormal urine loss for men with enlarged prostate. Performing these exercises, which involve contracting and then releasing the muscle, help support the bladder and close the sphincter. Because it can be hard to locate this muscle, try practicing while urinating. Contract the muscle, letting urine slow until it slows down and then stopping the urination for 20 seconds. In general, it’s recommended that men practice pelvic floor training three to five times daily. (11)
3. Herbal Supplements
The following herbs can also help with BPH:
Saw palmetto has been widely used as a therapeutic remedy for urinary dysfunction due to BPH. Research shows that saw palmetto helps improve urinary dysfunction and an overactive bladder in patients with BPH. It’s also known to be a safe means of treatment, even with long-term intake.
A study conducted in Japan found that stinging nettle has hydrophobic constituents, such as steroids, that may inhibit the membrane tissue activity of the prostate, which may subsequently suppress prostate-cell metabolism and growth.
Research published in Nutrition Research and Practice found that pumpkin seed oil was able to reduce symptoms of an enlarged prostate within three months. Maximal urinary flow rate was gradually improved significantly after six months.
Enlarged Prostate Precautions
Men with enlarged prostate should talk to their health care providers before taking any over-the-counter medicines, such as decongestants and antihistamines. These drugs, which are usually taken for colds and allergies, may worsen urinary symptoms by preventing muscles in the prostate and bladder neck from relaxing and allowing urine to flow freely.
Diuretics, which increase urination, can also make enlarged prostate symptoms worse, so men taking these drugs should speak to their health care providers about alternatives.
Final Thoughts on Enlarged Prostate
- An enlarged prostate affects one in five men between the ages of 50 and 60, and it’s even more common in older men.
- When the prostate is enlarged, it pushes against the bladder and urinary tract. This can cause issues with urination, such as frequent urination, feeling the need to urinate even though your bladder is empty, being unable to empty your bladder completely and dripping after urination.
- Age is the biggest risk factor for an enlarged prostate, or BPH. Men who live long enough will develop some features consistent with BPH.
- It’s becoming more popular to practice watchful waiting before turning to medications or surgery to relieve enlarged prostate symptoms. For men who experience severe, ongoing symptoms, a combination of alpha blockers and 5-alpha reductase inhibitors seems to be effective but does have side effects.
- Lifestyle changes can help relieve the symptoms of an enlarged prostate. Limiting fluid intake is helpful, and physical exercise and maintaining a healthy weight may also be beneficial. Pelvic floor exercises help strengthen the pelvic muscles and can control urination. Herbal supplements, such as saw palmetto, stinging nettle root and pumpkin seed oil, may also reduce discomfort.
Best Natural Remedies for Prostate Health
1. Diet and Lifestyle Changes
Consume the following foods and supplements and make the following lifestyle changes to help maintain optimal prostate health.
Tomatoes (especially when cooked) provide lycopene, which is critical for prostate health. Research shows that high consumption of cooked tomatoes, thanks to tomato nutrition providing lycopene and other antioxidants, may play a modest role in the prevention of prostate cancer.
Omega-3 foods, like wild-caught fish, reduce inflammation of the prostate. A systematic review published in Integrative Cancer Therapies indicates that researchers have found an association between higher intake of fish and decreased risk of prostate cancer-related death.
Green tea is the No. 1 beverage for anti-aging because it contains the highest level of antioxidants. It helps promote detoxification and prostate health. Detoxification can help to treat or relieve the symptoms of prostatitis.
A study conducted at the Research Center for Cancer Prevention and Screening in Japan involved 49,920 men aged 40–69 who completed a questionnaire that included their green tea consumption habit for four years. The data showed that green tea consumption was associated with a dose-dependent decrease in the risk of advanced prostate cancer. The men with the lowest risk of developing prostate cancer were drinking five cups of green tea a day.
Pumpkin seeds and pumpkin seed oil aid prostate health thanks to their high content of carotenoids and liposoluble vitamins. Pumpkin seeds contain zinc, which acts as a diuretic to help empty the bladder, and they reduce inflammation. This can be helpful with dealing with an enlarged prostate that causes issues with urination.
Avoid High Consumption of Meat and Dairy
According to research conducted in Sweden, high consumption of dairy products and meat has been linked to a greater risk of prostate cancer. Research shows that men with higher calcium intakes had a 4.6-fold increase in prostate cancer risk compared to men with low total calcium intake. This may be due to high calcium intake suppressing levels of vitamin D, which has exhibited anticancer properties.
Studies of red meat intake are relatively consistent in showing risk ratios of 1.5 to 2.0 when comparing the highest to lowest categories of intake. This may be due to the effects of meat on hormone profiles and the possible carcinogenic effects of the compounds generated when cooking meat at high temperatures.
A review conducted at Stanford University states that of all studies performed between 1976 and 2002, 16 out of 27 studies reported reduced risk of prostate cancer in men who were most active. Furthermore, in nine of those 16 studies, the reduction in risk was statistically significant. The average risk reduction ranged from 10 percent to 30 percent. Researchers believe that it’s the ability of exercise to modulate hormone levels, prevent obesity, enhance immune function and reduce oxidative stress that explains the protective benefits of exercise.
3. Essential Oils
Rosemary oil is a powerful antioxidant, and it’s believed that the molecular mechanisms of carnosic acid and carnosol may inhibit prostate cancer. Research suggests that rosemary’s polyphenols target multiple signaling pathways involved in cell cycle modulation and apoptosis (cell death). High-quality, pure rosemary oil can be taken internally for six weeks at a time, or it can be applied topically to the area right below the genitals twice daily. Because it’s a powerful oil, dilute it with equal parts carrier oil before applying it to the skin.
Frankincense oil is well-known for its ability to reduce pain and inhibit the spread of cancer. Research shows that frankincense reduces inflammation, which can be especially beneficial when suffering from prostatitis, and has the ability to suppress cancer cell viability. Use frankincense topically by applying it to the area right below the genitals, or use it internally by placing two drops on the roof of mouth for six weeks at a time.
Myrrh oil is known to have anticancer and antibacterial benefits. It also can be used to relax the muscles, which can be helpful when dealing with an enlarged prostate.
A study published in Oncology Letters investigated the potential anticancer activities of myrrh oil and found that certain cancer cell lines showed increased sensitivity to both myrrh and frankincense oil. Myrrh can be applied topically to the area below the genitals twice daily.
Precautions with Prostate Health
Before seeking any form of alternative medicine, especially for the treatment of cancer, be sure to first consult your health care provider. Your doctor or practitioner will guide your treatment regimen using the most effective forms of therapy, but voice your concern about the side effects of conventional treatment and desire to try natural forms of therapy.
Some alternative therapies may be harmful when used with medications, which is another reason to consult your doctor before beginning any herbal treatment.
Here’s to your health